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Under Construction

Route 3 at Robert O. Norris Bridge Painting Project

Project at a Glance

Begin Date
January 2017

Est Completion Date
June 2018

Under Construction

$12.8 million

M & J Painting Company

Lancaster and Middlesex


Robert Ridgell, VDOT Area Construction Engineer
(540) 899-4288
Kelly Hannon, VDOT Communications Manager
(540) 374-3344

Project Details

Construction began in January 2017 to paint the three center spans of the Robert O. Norris Bridge over the Rappahannock River.

Construction is scheduled to be complete by June 2018.

Cleaning and painting the bridge’s center spans will protect its structural steel elements and prevent deterioration and corrosion.

This project will complete a full painting of the Norris Bridge spans. Additional spans were cleaned and painted between 2009-2012.

Two temporary traffic signals control one-way alternating traffic at the bridge's center spans 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

The signals will remain in place until the end of the painting project in June 2018.

The Norris Bridge is located on Route 3 between Lancaster and Middlesex counties.

Vehicle Weight Posting

A temporary vehicle weight limit of 15 tons was lifted on Friday, Nov. 17, at the Robert O. Norris Bridge.

The posted weight limit on the bridge has been restored to allow vehicles carrying up to the legal load limit of 40 tons, and up to 45 tons with blanket permits.

VDOT lowered the vehicle weight limit for Norris Bridge to 15 tons on Wednesday, Oct. 25, 2017. The weight limit was immediately lowered after an annual bridge inspection identified potential concerns in two bridge pins, which help to support the bridge beams.

Click here to read more about the removal of this temporary weight limit on the Norris Bridge.

Structural Steel Repairs: September - November 2017

Work is underway to make spot structural steel repairs to the Robert O. Norris Bridge.

Between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. on Mondays through Saturdays, Route 3 may be reduced to a single lane for approximately one mile over the Rappahannock River.

Work is anticipated to be underway through November 2017. The repairs are routine bridge maintenance. This work is in addition to painting work at the bridge's center spans.

Between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Monday-Saturday, drivers may encounter one-way, alternating traffic on the bridge. Traffic will be controlled by automatic flagging stations and flagging crews.

When the steel repair work zone is in place, temporary traffic signals on the bridge will be placed in flash mode.

When the steel repairs are completed each day, the traffic signals will resume color operation, and will again control traffic. The temporary traffic signals will remain in place until the end of the painting project in June 2018.

A $1.1 million contract for structural steel repairs on Norris Bridge was awarded to McLean Contracting Co., of Glen Burnie, Maryland.

"Pardon Our Dust" Public Meeting

A "Pardon Our Dust" public meeting was held on Wednesday, Sept. 28, 2016, at Lancaster Middle School to share information about traffic impacts and what residents and motorists can expect during this painting project.

Meeting presentation

Fact sheet

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Page last modified: Nov. 17, 2017